As our society grows more and more complex, finding true peace becomes more like trying to find an oasis in the desert. My life is a busy one as well, as running a company and all of the stress & demands that comes with it, definitely takes its toll over time.
In North America one in five people are suffering from mental health issues. As mental health becomes more prevalent in the discourse of overall health, medical practitioners are looking for alternative ways to alleviate depression and anxiety.
One of these methods that has been garnering attention lately is mindfulness.
What is mindfulness?
Mindfulness meditation, which has recently entered our lexicon but has been a Buddhist practice for more than 2,400 years, focuses on cultivating self-awareness, being present in the moment by paying attention, all while being non-judgmental of any thoughts or feelings that may arise. Meditation helps us understand how our minds work and better connects us with ourselves by facilitating changes in brain regions associated with self, empathy, stress and memory.
Therefore, I wanted to take this opportunity to share with you some of the methods that I use in my life to find peace and disconnect from the daily routine:
Accept what is
There is only so much we can affect. What we cannot change, what we cannot influence no matter what, should not be a concern to us. This is what I notice with so many people, in that we focus and linger on things which we have no control over. Why worry about something that all the worrying in the world will not change? Why care about what other people think of us when we’re not even sure what it is they are actually thinking? Once you open the blinds to this fact, and start accepting what is that you cannot change, you automatically relieve yourself of a mountain of stress and anxiety. It’s like a huge weight has been lifted from your shoulders. Taking this path is following a road towards peace.
If you do not meditate yet, you are missing out on a very important activity that can change your life. Meditating for 20 minutes daily can have an enormous impact in all areas of your life. Simply close everything, sit back, close your eyes, and clear your mind of every single thought. Focus on the emptiness. You will be surprised what a mere 20 minutes of meditation can do to turn things around for you. If you have trouble meditating, feel free to email me at [email protected]
Spend time in nature
We spend so much time confined in buildings of steel and concrete and bricks that we quickly forget where we come from. It is natural for us to be in nature, and this is why it feels so good and it is so peaceful when you take a walk in a park or bike on a trail in the forest. If you feel overwhelmed, take a stroll outside where there are tons of trees and far from the city. Be there and just enjoy the sights, the sounds, and the peace.
Learn the power of a smile
Whenever you are laughing or smiling, something interesting happens. Not only does something happen on a chemical level to make you feel better, but it also stops all stress and negativity from entering your psyche. A simple smile can make such a difference.So whenever you find yourself in a similar predicament, just think of the silver lining, and don’t be shy to poke fun at yourself. You will quickly realize that peace finds its way much more easily to you when you smile.
What I mean by this is that most of the time, we are so consumed within our own problems that we can no longer see the forest from the trees. Therefore, it helps to remind ourselves how big the world is. Take a moment and read up about some other countries, cultures, and the likes. Be aware that the world does not revolve around your problems.Looking beyond ourselves is very important in finding peace and it leads me to my next point.
Care about others
You will never find peace by being self-consumed and only worrying about your own needs and wants. When you begin to genuinely care about other people, so much goodness comes right out. This only helps into solidifying your inner peace. It can be people close to you or pure strangers, but any act of kindness and goodwill eases your way towards peace. When I help other people, I stop focusing on my so-called problems and realize that my life isn’t so bad after all. This rids my entire being of all the stress and feelings of overwhelm. There is great peace and wisdom in thinking and caring about other people, which we are blind to when we are too deep within our own selfish ways.
Never lose hope
Hope is something you can never afford to lose. With hope you always have a path towards peace. With hope, I know that whatever is seemingly terrible, is only temporary and that soon enough, things will be just fine. This lifts off all of that negativity from my entire being, and I feel better pretty much instantly.
Live in the present moment
Most of the time, what we worry about is relating to something either in the past, or something that hasn’t happened. Living in the present moment erases all such thoughts. Why worry about something in the past that we cannot ever change?. Why worry about something that we are not even sure will happen or not? This is why in the present moment, you find true inner peace. In the present moment, there are no problems and no concerns.
Say this affirmation today to find your inner peace:
“All worries and anxieties are leaving my mind, making space for calmness and peace”.